University of Iowa

Amy Butcher

Amy Butcher is an award-winning essayist and author of Visiting Hours (Blue Rider Press/Penguin-Random House), a 2015 memoir that earned starred reviews and praise from The New York Times Sunday Review of Books, NPR, The Star Tribune, Kirkus Reviews, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, and others. Additional essays have appeared recently in The New York Times “Modern Love,” The New York Times “Opinion,” Harper’s, The Iowa Review, Brevity, Fourth Genre, and Guernica. Her work received the grand prize in the 2016 Solas Awards’ “Best Travel Writing” series and in The Iowa Review awards for nonfiction judged by David Shields. Her writing has been featured on BBC Radio and National Public Radio and was selected for inclusion in Best Travel Writing 2016. Her essays have twice been nominated for Pushcart Prizes and twice been distinguished by the Best American Essays series. Her 2016 New York Times op-ed, “Emoji Feminism,” inspired Google to propose 11 new female, professionally-empowered emojis, now included in smartphone software packaging and on display at the Design Museum in London. Amy is a graduate of The University of Iowa Nonfiction Writing Program. She presently serves as an Assistant Professor of English at Ohio Wesleyan University.

Instructor Events

Weekend June 16 to June 17 2018

Once upon a time, long before the Age of Oprah, writers who had lived through something fascinating or terrible or both would turn their experiences into exaggerated works and call them fiction. Nowadays, however, these experiences equally take the form of memoir—ruminative, retrospective narratives that comprise a sub-genre of the diverse and expansive genre we typically call creative nonfiction. What does this mean?

Weeklong June 17 to June 22 2018

You’re out of shape, bored of the same routine, or simply haven’t had the time to keep that promise you made to yourself in January. You’re stuck, in other words, in one way or in several. You need that extra push. Welcome to Essay Bootcamp. In this course, we’ll sweat our way back into the writing chair and work our way up to heavy lifting—of pencils and of thought—through a dozen new and generative exercises guaranteed to jumpstart a year of writing.